December 11 2013 Latest news:
Paddy Davitt, Norwich City Writer
Monday, October 7, 2013
Chris Hughton allayed fears Anthony Pilkington had suffered a fresh injury setback after the midfielder appeared to be struggling late on against the Blues.
Pilkington is expected to join up with the Republic of Ireland for a World Cup qualifier in Germany later this week despite signs in the closing stages at Carrow Road he was feeling the effects of a gruelling outing that brought a goal and a strong penalty claim following his tumble under the attentions of Ramires.
“I wasn’t exactly sure at the time. It looked like it but sometimes you need to see it again to verify it,” said Hughton. “Anthony definitely gets to the ball first. If I look at Ramires’ action he ends up going over him and generally that is a penalty so I feel hard done by on that one.
“No, I think he is okay injury-wise. With Anthony he missed chunks of the pre-season and he has come back in recently. For him it was just a little bit of fatigue. He has managed to get that opportunity with Ireland and it was long overdue with the injuries he had. He has been in and around it and I think he will certainly benefit from playing at international level. I can only look at what he has done for us and he is two-footed player who has done well on that left side.”
Hughton opted to keep Nathan Redmond in reserve on the opposite flank until the final stages after making only one change to his Stoke starting line-up with a recall for team captain Sebastien Bassong.
“Seb is our captain, he is a player who has fared very, very well for us and generally one who you would consider to be among our two best centre halves,” he said. “It was tough on Ryan (Bennett). It was a big call and these are the tough decisions you have to make as a manager. Nathan is a young player who will have his ups and downs. He was injured last week and we were on the back of a good result at Stoke. I have to make sure to use him the right way and sometimes with that type of player it is about making an impact from the bench as you saw with their players who came on.”